Billie Myers

No ride this morning, as I had to take some stuff into work and I don’t fancy wobbling all over the road with a rucksack full of laptop / ipads / phones etc. The sun is out again and I would rather be out there cranking up some miles. I have a long ride planned this weekend, just hoping the weather is going to be kind. (over to Sian Lloyd for that one)

So my list of famous re-tweets is growing, the Fantastic Billie Myers was gracious enough to re-tweet my sponsorship page this afternoon. I had to rush over to youtube and listen to “Kiss the rain” … fantastic. can’t believe that was 1997, where does time go ?. Looking forward to her new album Tea and Sympathy (available March 18th). please check it out people.

The gorgeous and very talented - Billie Myers

The gorgeous and very talented – Billie Myers

Some evening sun.

Well the sun poked its head out from between the clouds this evening, so I took the opportunity to get some miles in. It’s still blinking freezing on the bike, 2 layers and a neck warmer. The worst bit is on the faster downhills (the wind through the helmet slots gives your forehead a painful headache. ). The sun makes the ride a whole lot more enjoyable even though there seems to be no heat coming from it. Anyway a nice 25 miles … 1st sportive of the year is the weekend after this one. Stay tuned.

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No ride this weekend

No chance to really get out on the bike this weekend, it came back from the workshop yesterday and it’s just too cold out there; with this bitter wind it’s basically dangerous. I see they cancelled the 66th edition of Kuurne-Bruxelles-Kuurne due to bad weather. SO I don’t feel too bad about not getting out. (any excuse to watch the Rugby).

The lovely Sian Lloyd, TV weather girl extraordinaire, re-tweeted my sponsorship page so MANY thanks to her for that, SO please check out her website.

The lovely Siân Lloyd

The lovely Siân Lloyd

Bike is back.

Well the bike is back, had to get a few spares but all is looking very good. Set the bike up in the garage and gave it a good grease / oil and service. Now as I am old, middle aged and still have a brain like a 12 year old, I have decided to splash out and upgrade. SO… I have ordered one of these babies which will be arriving in the next 4/5 days. The reasons for this are ..

1: I can use the old bike for commuting to work (and the new one for the day rides)
2: The components on the old bike are getting worn now, (and it will be expensive to replace everything)
3: I may sell the old one.
4: I am making excuses just to warrant spending more money on bikes.
5: I am getting old and I am just spending money on more toys.
6: … can’t really think of a sensible reason ?

Will post a photo of the beast once it has arrived and is assembled.

Another great event today was that Marco Pinotti (the fantastic Italian cyclist) re-tweeted one of my requests for sponsorship. I have been following him for a few years now and saw him at the Olympics last year. He is laid up with a busted shoulder at the moment, so wishing him well for a speedy recovery. So a big thankyou to the “cycling Professor” and here is a shot of him at London 2012 ( I recommend his e-book on amazon)

Pinotti ... on the back straight of the London 2010 Olympic time trial

Pinotti … on the back straight of the London 2010 Olympic time trial

Broken bike

Well I suppose it had to happen sooner or later, I got caught out at a junction and due to some evasive action the chain jammed in the front derailleur. Nasty sounds and a big clunk meant the whole front mech was in a bit of a state. Managed to jury rig the gear into something I could get home on but the bike is now in the workshop. Looks like a new front mech is needed and there are a few other faults (headset bearings and the gear cables are shot) So I will get it repaired and get me back on the road ASAP. Half tempted to upgrade and use the current bike as a run around / commuter. Will have to check the bank balance before I make that decision.

20 miles after work.

Well, a few days of just the normal commute to work. There was a break in the weather so I took the opportunity to take in a 20mile ride after work. The route has some nice hills and climbs (which I need to get some practice on). Things are getting much easier the more time I spend on the bike. Have signed up for a number of sportives which start soon. So check back for some photos and updates on these soon.

At last a longer ride…

With a break in the weather I got a chance to get out in the “Sun” (a balmy 8 degrees Celsius…has spring arrived ?) So a nice ride out from Camberley to Alton and back was the plan for the day. With the bike all ready and a some breakfast fuel loaded in my guts off I went. 1.8 miles in (just as I am getting warmed up) I notice the tell tale feeling of a front wheel flat. I must have done something bad in a previous life, I am thinking to myself as I am once again by the side of the road, bike upside down, wheel off and messing about with inner tubes and puncture repair kits. I get the puncture fixed, and get the tire up to pressure with my nice new mini pump and away we go.

Total Punctures on training rides = 3
Inner tubes used so far = 2

Getting out into the back lanes through Crondall and onto Well I make some good time. (although I am very conscious about the road surface and getting another flat, as I don’t have a spare inner tube now). I make it to Alton and pick up “cycle route 23” which cuts me through to Four Marks. Well it should do until the cycle path turns into a track .. and then a muddy track .. and then into a forest path. Now …being on a road bike with nice thin tires is great for bowling along a country lane, but off-road its a nightmare and the bike is all over the place.  I make it back onto the road after 2 miles of hell and vow never to follow a “cycle path” again. A quick stop for lunch near a bike shop, where I get my tire up to full pressure with a borrowed pump and spend 40 minutes picking mud, pine cones, and all sorts of stuff out of my brakes and gears. I return to Camberley avoiding the “cycle route” incident free, amazed at the number of cyclists who are out must have spotted at least 20.

Total distance covered was 60 miles (just over half of what I need to cover on the day)